Thanks Monica for the quick response and kind words, as well as constructive criticism! Below are my thoughts, but I reserved my comments for Prelude No 3 for the end.
No. 7 is good – the sound is little funny on the high notes though. I’m practicing this piece too right now, but not because it’s Chopin. I’m practicing Mompou’s version!
Great - good luck with your Mompou version. I look forward to hearing it. Thanks for the nice comment on my recording.
Regarding the funny high notes, I'm fairly sure this is due to my post-processing steps as the original sound and WAV files produced are very clear. I just re-ran this one through the software, backing off some of the reverb settings that I've noticed can cause some distortion (and even echoes). If you get a few minutes I would be interested to know if it seemed to help in your opinion.
No. 9 - The bass sounds real good on this one. Perhaps you got too loud slightly too soon near the end? Just my opinion, of course.
I'm glad you thought the bass sounded good here. I forgot to mention that I used the equalizer setting for the first time with this piece, since I was worried about it being too bass heavy. I reduced the bass levels a bit when outputing to MP3. Looks like I may have found a good setting!
No. 15 - Sorry, but I have a problem with this one. First off, your LH is not loud enough on the B part. But then later on the crashing fortissimos – the sound from your piano is not just loud, but very harsh! I had to rip the ear plugs right out of my ears!
Hmm... well I certainly didn't want to blow people's eardrums out!
On my headphones this isn't an issue, and after many years of training I know how to avoid playing ugly banging notes... I believe this is also a post-processing issue.
I just ran this one back through the software and eliminated the "normalization" step I normally take, as well as backing off some of the reverb. I've noticed that in my software normalization can sometimes increase the loud parts disproportionately. Again, if you have a few minutes I'd be interested to know if this new file helped the problem
If some minor tweaks to the conversion to MP3 don't fix the issue, I'm not really interested in re-recording this one and will put it off or skip it altogether. It's a little disappointing falling short of my goal of 12 preludes over the past few months, but maybe I'll submit one of the other handful of preludes I've been working on...
No. 17 – This one is okay – perhaps a bit too hurried for my taste though. Especially at the end – you could be more introspective in your sound; more sotto voce. However, your LH can be louder on those Fz A-flats. I read somewhere that Chopin intended those notes to sound like cannon-fire in the distance.
That is the problem with some of these pieces, to be sure - the very different opinions about tempo, phrasing, etc. I actually spent a good amount of time deciding on approach and working up the ending of this piece, and paid particular attention to the sotto voce and other markings.
I do like the idea about cannon-fire in the distance, which I could have done a bit more with surely. However, I think this observation supports my decision to maintain the tempo (although really there is probably no definitive right and wrong). I used to play the ending much slower with many pauses, but changed my mind about this when thinking more about the piece. I see the ending more like a "moving away" from the action, perhaps floating further and further above it. In this manner, the sounds would become more and more subdued - like your distant cannons - and eventually die out, but they would not slow down. Anyway, that was my thinking for what it's worth...
No. 3 was very nice. I suppose it’s easier to play the LH on your digital. I struggle with this piece on my grand.
Thank you again for the nice comment.
Regarding your comment about this being easier to play on a digital, I'm not sure I understand. After reading so many of your posts I know you wouldn't expect me to interpret your comments this way, but saying that a piece is likely easier on my digital than on a real grand is extremely off the mark in my opinion. I worked very hard over many months on the LH for Prelude 3, and can easily (or rather with equal difficulty) play it on any piano as a result.
I've played on all types of pianos my whole life, and have put in the same level of significant time, sweat, tears, and aches that most folks on this board have. Digital pianos offer no short cuts for your fingers that I'm aware of, any more than playing a Yamaha vs. Steinway etc. offers any advantages due to differing touch. Pianists all have their perferences for touch and keyboard reaction/sensitivity, but I've never heard someone claim that playing on a XX piano is easier than another type.
I know many on this board are quite opinionated about acoustics, and I actually agree with most folks and would MUCH rather play acoustic than digital. At the moment, however, I'm trying to do the best I can with what I have. I'm sure other folks on your boards may also own nice, quite expensive, digital pianos with very good, weighted keys that are FAR removed from your run of the mill "keyboard". I thought perhaps it may be worthwhile to clarify what you meant here?
Thanks again Monica for all the feedback!